Osmanthus Goji Berry and Coconut Jelly

This is my Osmanthus Goji Berry and Coconut Jelly for Chinese New Year. This recipe shows you how to make layered jelly that looks super impressive, and tastes great. This jelly is considered a dessert, but it’s a very healthy one. Osmanthus is a flower that is used as a tea which improves your complexion, goji berries have lots of anti-oxidants, and coconut milk helps boosts your immune system! It’s a win win!

Thoughts:

So, it’s almost Chinese New Year. A time of celebration, seeing family over dim sum, receiving/giving our red pockets, trying to remember all the sayings when wishing someone good luck, and fighting in the supermarket to get the best cut of BBQ pork for dinner. Among all that chaos I wanted to make something chill and refreshing (literally!) Which is why I coming up with this osmanthus goji berry and coconut jelly recipe.

The other reason why I chose this dish was for my grandma. This jelly is one of her favourite desserts. We try to get it for her every time we go out for dim sum or when we’re at a Chinese restaurant. So, for this Chinese New Year, I thought I’d go and figure how to make this for her as a surprise. It took me 4 tries to figure out how to make this. Which resulted in a lot of jelly for me and my family to eat…

The first failure was when I used chrysanthemum tea instead of osmanthus tea. It tasted pretty good, but it wasn’t what I was looking for. So, I had to go out and search for the right tea. The second attempt got me closer, but left me a little bitter. Mainly because I used way too much of the osmanthus petals resulting in a bitter flavour. The third one tasted fine, the issue was how it looked. I was in such a rush to get everything filmed, that I didn’t allow the coconut to properly set, and the tea cool before pouring onto the first layer. This caused the coconut jelly to melt, and mix with the osmanthus tea creating a cloudy look.

So, for my last attempt, I took my time and patiently waited for everything to set and cool. Which resulted in a beautiful layered jelly of golden tea and red berries. Perfect for Chinese New Year!

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Colours of gold and red to celebrate Chinese New Year

The best part of this is that even though this is a dessert, it’s actually quite healthy. Osmanthus tea has been known to improve your complexion, and helps rid your body of nitric oxide. Goji berries can boost your immune system, assist in curbing your hunger, and has lots of anti-oxidants. Finally, coconut milk has healthy fatty acids which help protects your body from infections and viruses! It’s a win win!

For those who are vegetarian or are vegan, you can substitute the gelatin with something called agar agar. It’s a plant based gelatin that produces a very similar texture to the jelly. It’s used in a lot of Thai foods and desserts.

I hope you give this a try! This dish is very easy to make and also very good for you. So there no reason why you shouldn’t make it.

Cheers!


Ingredients:

Serves 5-8

– Coconut jelly
3/4 cup coconut milk
1/4 cup hot water
1 pack of gelatin
2 tbsp white sugar
1/4 cup milk (optional)

– Osmanthus goji berry jelly
2 tsp dried osmanthus tea petals
4 tbsp white sugar
2 tbsp goji berries
2 cup water
1/2 cup hot water
2 packs of gelatin

Directions:

For the coconut jelly, start by dissolving the gelatin in hot water. Next pour the milk into a small pan/pot over medium low heat. Add the sugar along with the gelatin and heat up till it starts to simmer and everything is dissolved. Give the coconut a taste, if it’s too strong to your liking then you can add some milk to water it down.

Once you got it to your liking, pour the mixture into a small baking dish and chill for 2-3 hours.

When the jelly is set, we’ll move onto making the osmanthus jelly. We start the same way as the coconut, we dissolve the gelatin in some hot water. Then, in a small pan/pot we add the water, tea petals, goji berries, gelatin mixture, and white sugar. Get it to a simmer over medium low and let it simmer for 10 minutes.

Pour the tea into a container that’s easy to pour and let it cool until it’s just a little warm. This could take about 30 minutes.

After, grab a spoon and the coconut jelly. Carefully hold the spoon upside down over the coconut jelly, and slowly pour the osmanthus tea onto the back of the spoon. This will help reduce the harsh pouring and prevent any mixing between the two ingredients. Place it back in the fridge and let it chill for another 2-3 hours.

Once it’s properly set and chilled. Take the container out, and run a thin spatula or knife along the sides to separate the jelly. Then lightly dunk the bottom of the container into a bath of hot water for 30 seconds. This should loosen the bottom, and the jelly should come right out when you flip it over a cutting board.

Cut the edges off with knife, making sure to wipe the blade after each slice, and saves those yourself. (Chef treat!) Cut the rest into equal squares, flip them over so that the osmanthus is on the top, and serve!

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